Early detection and treatment of chronic kidney disease are the keys to keeping kidney disease from progressing to kidney failure. Some simple tests can be done to detect early kidney disease. They are:
- A test for protein in the urine. Albumin to Creatinine Ratio (ACR), estimates the amount of a albumin that is in your urine. An excess amount of protein in your urine may mean your kidney's filtering units have been damaged by disease. One positive result could be due to fever or heavy exercise, so your doctor will want to confirm your test over several weeks.
- A test for blood creatinine. Your doctor should use your results, along with your age, race, gender and other factors, to calculate your glomerular filtration rate (GFR). Your GFR tells how much kidney function you have.
It is especially important that people who have an increased risk for chronic kidney disease have these tests. You may have an increased risk for kidney disease if you:
- are older
- have diabetes
- have high blood pressure
- have a family member who has chronic kidney disease
- are an African American, Hispanic American, Asians and Pacific Islander or American Indian.
If you are in one of these groups or think you may have an increased risk for kidney disease, ask your doctor about getting tested.